The fight was pretty dull, but Marcus Brimage managed to pull off a split decision victory over the debuting Maximo Blanco in the first fight at UFC 145. Neither fighter engaged much, which made the fight quite hard to score. Two judges had it for Brimage, one with a 29-28 score and the other 30-27, while one judge gave it to Blanco with a 29-28 card.
Blanco got off to a fast start with an inside leg kick and nice head kick, but Briamage eventually responded with a charging combination. The fighters were tentative for the first half of the round, mainly just using feints. Brimage was the one that was coming forward though, and landed a few nice strikes. Blanco briefly got a takedown, but Brimage popped up immediately. Blanco landed a nice right hook and leg kick after another lull in the action. Brimage continued to be the aggressor for the last minute, occasionally landing some strikes.
Blanco was the fighter coming forward early in the second, landing a variety of shots including a nice front kick and a switch kick. He followed that up with a big jumping knee and looked for a head kick, but Brimage escaped unscathed. The fighters went back to being cautious in the middle of the round, with not much going on. Brimage finally landed a left, while Blanco countered with another front kick. Blanco landed a nice hook in the last few seconds of the round.
The third opened cautiously as well. Blanco caught Brimage in the cup with a knee, but Brimage didn't even need a time out. Brimage landed a couple of nice inside leg kicks, while Blanco looked to land the left hook unsuccessfully. The crowd finally started to boo midway through the third. Blanco looked for a takedown, but but Brimage stuffed it and come forward with a good combination. Brimage continued to be the aggressor late in the round, but there weren't a lot of strikes landed by either man.
The most interesting thing about the fight was the tumbling competition they engaged in after the final bell. Seriously.
This was Blanco's debut at featherweight and in the UFC. He was coming off a loss to Pat Healy in his only Strikeforce appearance. Brimage was a contestant on The Ultimate Fighter 14 and won his only official UFC bout over Stephen Bass at the TUF 14 Finale in December.